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Roofing Contractors: 7 Red Flags to Avoid

Red flags to avoid

Not all roofing companies or contractors are created equal. Some are better than others. Some are very good. And, some are very bad.

An exceptional roofing company will make your life easy without you thinking about it. Case in point: When your roof is working as it should, you don’t think about it. Get it? On the other hand, when there are problems (leaks, creaks, etc.), you have to act quickly so further damage doesn’t happen.

A very bad roofing company will only make your problems worse. For example, let’s say a homeowner notices a water spot on their ceiling. They have a leak! And so the homeowner finds the first roofing company they find, without doing any research on them. The contractor comes out, “fixes” the problem, but the water spot only grows. They clearly didn’t fix the problem.

Maybe the contractor wasn’t qualified. Or, perhaps they just didn’t have enough experience to get the job done. Even worse: The contractor perhaps couldn’t find anything wrong, yet they lied and said they patched a section of the roof to pretend they did something.

There are numerous red flags that you can notice before hiring a less-than-exceptional roofing company. In this article, we’re going to focus on 7 red flags and explain each of them in detail. The 7 red flags we’re going to cover are:

  • There's no manager on the job
  • The company doesn't have the right permits
  • The contractor covers up damages
  • The company doesn't pay their suppliers
  • The company uses cheap materials
  • The contractors don't get paid, or get paid very little
  • The company is filing for bankruptcy

Let’s jump right in and get started with the first red flag.

Red Flag #1: No Manager on the Job

The roofing company may be in business for decades. But, if the contractor performing the work has little to no experience, it would be smart to have a trainer, manager, or supervisor on the job.

There’s a quality risk when there’s no supervision of the work being performed. This is true when a roofer is performing something as easy as sealing a patch. And it’s also true in the event a roofing company is performing a full roof replacement.

Ask who will be managing the job for best results. If the roofing company says “no one will manage it”, it’s potentially a red flag, unless the contractor is already an expert with many years of experience.

Managers on the job can often see things the worker may miss. This is because managers often have many years of experience themselves. They’ve learned how to patch cracks. They’ve participated in full roof replacements. And they know how to spot areas where leaks may happen (or are currently happening).

Next, let’s learn about permits.

Red Flag #2: The Roofing Company Doesn’t Have Permits

Have you ever seen small signs off the road advertising professional contracting services? I’m talking about the ones you’d see at a stop light, perhaps, in the median of a road. These are the same type of signs that advertise voting for a politician.

Well, contractors sometimes advertise this way. You’ll see signs that say “Roofer” and only include a phone number. But beware: Oftentimes, these contractors do not have the required permits to perform roofing work.

Most of the time, they don’t have a website. They don’t have an advertising budget. And they don’t have permits. It’s dangerous to hire any type of contractor—roofer, plumber, electrician—who doesn’t have the right permits to work.

If a roofer doesn’t have a permit, it could be hard to find them if they scam you (i.e. don’t do the work after being paid). Roofing companies that are licensed are known and registered businesses with the appropriate government entities.

Let’s jump into red flag #3 next.

Red Flag #3: The Contractor Covers Up Damages

This is where reading reviews comes into play. In this day and age, everything can be found online. What do the reviews say?

If the roofing company has a long enough history, they likely have a large number of reviews. Take a short amount of time and go through these reviews. Do former customers say good or great things? Or, can you spot a large number of bad reviews?

If the reviews are bad, perhaps they say things like “the contractor left garbage everywhere” or “the roof kept leaking and they didn’t return my phone calls”.

At the time of this writing, we have a 5.0/5.0 review rating on Google Reviews. High reviews like this are a green flag because a great score shows the company performs at an exceptional level.

Let’s see what red flag #4 is next.

Red Flag #4: The Roofing Company Doesn’t Pay Their Suppliers

When a contractor or company starts not paying their suppliers, it’s only a matter of time before things get worse. This is a sign the roofing company is heading toward bankruptcy. We’ll talk more about bankruptcy in red flag #7.

Here’s why it’s a red flag if a roofing company doesn’t pay their suppliers: It’s likely they’re in financial trouble. That means the company will try to get as much work as possible in the fastest way possible. What does that mean? They will cut corners on the job.

When a roofing contractor spends as little time as possible to complete the job, mistakes happen. Or, even worse, the contractor doesn’t perform the full job and they say they’re done. Would you know the difference? I suppose you would if there’s a leak and it only gets worse.

Next is Red flag #5.

Red Flag #5: The Roofing Contractor Uses Cheap Materials

This is a big one. The entire purpose of a roof is to protect the interior of a home and its inhabitants. If a roofing contractor uses cheap materials, it’s only a matter of time until the roof begins to fail.

Surely we know that all roofs need to be replaced over time; however, a roof made with cheap materials will need to be replaced much sooner. We mean years sooner.

Additionally, let’s say you have a strong roof and you don’t need the entire roof to be replaced. Maybe you have a leak or have some large, visible cracks that need to be filled in. Cheap materials will ensure that the fix is only a temporary fix.

Reading reviews will help you watch out for this red flag. Finding a roofing company (like ours) that uses materials of quality will save you money over time. You’ll have less of a headache too!

Let’s read about red flag #6 next.

Red Flag #6: Bad Companies Pay Their Workers Poorly

Companies are as good as their employees, or contractors. Think of it this way, if you were underpaid, would you stay and your current job? Or, would you find another company to work for that paid you appropriately?

You would find another company!

When a bad company pays its workers as little as possible, the good workers leave. That means the worst contractors stay. Perhaps they would rather get paid little knowing they will be able to keep their job than risk getting fired somewhere else if they know they aren’t a good performer.

Where does that leave you and your roof? It’s quite clear: If unsatisfactory workers perform the job on your roof, there’s a good chance it won’t be done currently. Even worse: The roof could end up being in a worse position than when the work started.

Let’s review the final red flag next.

Red Flag #7: The Company is Filing for Bankruptcy

We touched on this red flag during red flag #4. And the message is the same: A company with money problems will cut corners.

Bad companies in this situation will try to make as much money as possible in as little time as possible. That means they’ll send contractors out to perform a job with less time than is required.

Patching jobs aren’t done correctly. Whole roof replacement may come with a plethora of issues that may manifest over a short period of time. And the cheapest materials might be used (see red flag #5).

Reading reviews are helpful here. One of the big problems with working with companies that are going bankrupt is this: If they cause major damage, there may be a problem with taking them to court. That’s because the company can prove they don’t have any money to pay, since they’re going through bankruptcy proceedings.

Roofing companies with great reviews prove you have little to worry about.

Contact Rhino Roofing After Seeing Green Flags

With us at Rhino Roofing, none of the red flags are applicable to us. We are a customer service-based business that uses quality materials. Our professionals are talented and there is supervision on each job we do.

Head over to our contact page next to get in touch with us. That’s the next step for you to have the healthiest and strongest roof you’ve ever had.

Call The Naperville Roofing Contractor You Can Trust!